Serious health risk: why you should never wash eggs before cooking them

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Washing eggs before cooking them can harm your health under certain circumstances.

Washing fruit and vegetables before cooking or eating them is generally considered good hygiene practice to remove any dirt, bacteria, or pesticides on the surface. However, washing all types of food before cooking is unnecessary.

In fact, washing some foods can be detrimental to your health. For example, you should never wash chicken before cooking it. This generally applies to all types of raw meat.

According to Reader’s Digest, eggs are also one of the foods that should not be washed before eating. So, if you want to make a perfect fried egg this weekend, read on to find out why you shouldn’t wash eggs before cooking them.

Why you shouldn’t wash eggs

According to United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) guidelines, commercial egg processing involves washing the eggs.

In these egg factories, the egg’s natural coating is removed. If consumers who buy the eggs take them home and rewash them, it could pose a contamination risk.

The USDA explains:

The commercial washing process removes the natural coating on freshly laid eggs that prevents bacteria from penetrating the shell. It is replaced by a thin layer of edible mineral oil that protects long-term home egg storage.
Additional treatment of eggs in your home, such as washing them, could increase the risk of cross-contamination, especially if the shell is cracked.

According to the Reader’s Digest report, additional washing at home can introduce bacteria onto the egg’s surface and into the shell, which has become more porous due to commercial processing.
Should you wash farm eggs?
According to Reader’s Digest, while farm-raised eggs are more likely to be tainted with dirt and grime, and you might think they need to be washed thoroughly, it’s better not to wash those farm-fresh eggs.

The report says that if you need to wash farm-fresh eggs, it’s better to use warm water and soap.

Experts,, therefore, advise never to wash eggs, especially if they have been commercially processed.

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